Bahrain: Army Fired At Mourners, Media – Live Fire From Street Level & Helicopter

UPDATE 19:56 GMT: Associated Press says some doctors and medics on emergency medical teams were in tears as they tended to the wounded. X-rays showed bullets still lodged inside victims.

UPDATE 18:59 GMT: Video added…caution: graphic scenes.


Vodpod videos no longer available.

UPDATE 17:46 GMT: Associated Press now reports that the injured in Bahrain total at least 50 persons.

UPDATE 16:37 GMT: Associated Press’s Hadeel Al-Shalchi via Twitter: Hundreds at the Salmaniyah hospital chanting anti-monarchy slogans

UPDATE 16:31 GMT: BBC adds details: Witnesses said the army fired weaponry and tear gas, and hospital officials said at least 25 people had been hurt.

UPDATE 16:18 GMT: BBC now also reporting that Bahraini security forces opened fire on anti-government protesters, citing witnesses.

UPDATE 16:10 GMT: New York Times, expanding on their earlier report: Government forces opened fire on hundreds of mourners marching toward Pearl Square, sending people running away in panic amid the boom of concussion grenades. But even as the people fled, at least one helicopter was spraying fire on them and a witness reported seeing mourners crumpling to the ground.

A witness said the shooters were military, not police, which might indicate a hardening of the government’s stance against those trying to stage a popular revolt.

It was not immediately clear if all the forces were using live ammunition or rubber bullets to fire at the crowd, mostly young men who had been part of a funeral procession for protesters killed in an earlier crackdown by police.

Minutes later, forces in a helicopter that had been shooting at the crowds, stopped to fire at a Western reporter and videographer who were shooting footage on the latest violence.

At least seven people had died in clampdowns before today’s violence and a Western official said at least one had died today. There were reports of at least 50 injured.


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UPDATE 16:02 GMT: Al Jazeera now saying “a number of people have reportedly been killed in Bahrain as shots were fired at pro-reform protesters.”

UPDATE 15:49 GMT: Reuters now saying “Bahraini troops shot at protesters near Pearl Square on Friday and wounded many.”

UPDATE 15:44 GMT: Reuters is reporting that a former Shi’ite lawmaker said Bahraini troops shot at protesters near Pearl Square today and wounded several.

Jalal Firooz, of the Wefaq bloc that resigned from parliament on Thursday, said demonstrators had been elsewhere in the city, marking the death of a protester killed earlier this week when riot police had fired tear gas at them.

The demonstrators then made for Pearl Square, where army troops who took it over after the police raid on Thursday, opened fire, he said.

UPDATE 15:38 GMT: Al Jazeera now reporting shots heard in Pearl Square.

UPDATE 15:24 GMT: Associated Press is reporting soldiers fired tear gas and shot heavy weapons into the air…hospital officials said at least 20 people were injured, some seriously. Ambulance sirens were heard throughout central Manama a day after riot police swept through the protest encampment in Pearl Square, killing at least five people.

An Associated Press cameraman saw army units shooting anti-aircraft weapons above the protesters in apparent warning shots and attempts to drive them back from security cordons about 200 yards (200 meters) from the square.

UPDATE 15:19 GMT: New York Times is reporting that government forces opened fire on hundreds of mourners marching toward Pearl Square Friday, sending people running away in panic amid the boom of concussion grenades.

A Western official quoted a witness saying that the shooters were from the military, not the police, and that protesters began dropping to the ground after the firing started.

It was not immediately clear if the army was using live ammunition or rubber bullets to fire at the crowd, mostly young men who had been part of a funeral procession for protesters killed earlier in a crackdown by police on their peaceful revolt against the government.

Minutes later, forces in a helicopter fired on a reporter and videographer who were shooting a video on the latest violence.

Complete article via New York Times

UPDATE 15:15 GMT: Associated Press’s Hadeel Al-Shalchi via Twitter: Army firing live ammo from anti-aircraft guns from APC’s at protesters

———–

In an earlier report, BBC said that crowds attending Friday prayers joined the funeral processions, calling for the overthrow of the ruling family.

At the prayers a Shia cleric described the clashes as a “massacre,” saying the government had shut the door to talks.

Later, gunfire was heard in the center of Manama, though it was unclear where it came from.

Complete article via BBC

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